Kenya

Tana River District: Drought Monthly Bulletin, August 2006

Attachments

Situation Overview.

Rains reported during the last reporting period in the southern and central parts of the district have started subsiding while no rains were reported in the northern and hinterland areas.

The range resources in the hinterland and northern parts of the district have begun deteriorating. Some of the areas have already raised alarm over water deficits.

Livestock body and health conditions are rated fair in almost all parts of the district. Suspected cases of Lumpy Skin Disease were reported in parts of Wayu and Waldena.

Livestock prices have stabilized compared to last month while on the other hand the prices of Maize and legumes (green gram) have declined.

Most farmers have harvested. However, most of the crops in some areas of Kipini (Chara) were affected by excessive rain. An approximate of 90 acres was affected.

The northern and hinterland areas continue to face food deficits.

High livestock concentration is being felt in the delta, national parks and riverine areas.

Lack of health services in the rural areas of the district continues to be reported as a major problem to the human health conditions in the affected communities.

Compared to last reporting period, the nutritional status of children aged below 5 years based on the MUAC measurement generally indicated some improvement.

Security tension is anticipated along the river and delta where high concentration of livestock is currently being felt and more migrations are anticipated as the drought situation continues.

Recommendations to DSG/KFSSG

Food aid to be enhanced in the areas where no positive impact was felt after the long rains

The long rains food assessment carried out in August recommended continuation of food aid to the six divisions of Garsen, Wenje, Galole, Bura, Madogo and Bangale. Implementation of the same to begin effects from October meanwhile the current distribution to continue till that time.

The security organs and peace committees should be on the alert to curb anticipated incidences of conflicts in the hotspot areas

In order to improve the health standards of communities, health services be enhanced in the rural areas of the district

Current interventions.

Non-Food Aid

Rehabilitation of boreholes - ALRMP II.

Water tracking to stressed communities and schools - Catholic Diocese Of Garissa, Water Department And ALRMP II

Restocking programme by Tana River Peace Reconciliation and Development.

Food Aid.

EMOP is still ongoing

Supplementary feeding programme by KRCS.

DSG meeting

The District Steering Group meeting was to be held on 4th September 2006 however, due to involvement of the members in the Provincial Agricultural Show it was postponed to 11th September 2006.

1. ENVIRONMENTAL INDICATORS (STABILITY)

1.1Rainfall

No rains were reported in the northern and hinterland areas.

Rains reported in the southern and central parts of the district have started subsiding.

1.2 Condition of natural vegetation and pasture.

Pasture quality is rated fair to good and improving in the southern parts of the district however, it was rated poor and deteriorating in the northern and hinterland

The forage quantity was also rated adequate in the south while reported to be inadequate and deteriorating in the northern and hinterland areas.

Areas experiencing pasture stress include Asako, Buwa, Waldena, Kone and parts of Bura and Madogo.

Though the condition is rated fair and adequate in the southern parts of the district, high livestock concentration being experienced in that area is feared to deplete the range earlier than expected.

1.3 Water Sources and Availability

The condition of water sources was reported to be deteriorating compared to last month.

Most natural ponds have dried; the water levels in the traditional wells have begun deepening while water quantities in most dams have begun declining.

Average distances to water sources for domestic use was recorded at 2km compared to 1.5km of last month while distances to water from grazing areas is steadily increasing reporting over 20km in the most affected areas.

1.4 Emerging Issues.

1.4.1 Insecurity/conflict /human displacement

Security tension is anticipated along the river and delta where high livestock concentration is currently being felt and more migrations are anticipated as the drought spell continues.

Already some cases of conflicts between farmers and pastoralists over access to water points are being reported.

Pastoralists who crossed to graze in the Tsavo east national park were reported to been arrested by the KWS game rangers.

Human/wildlife conflict in terms of crop destruction, livestock predation and human attacks continue to be reported in most parts of the district.

Areas affected include Asako, Wayu, Waldena, Assa parts of Wenje, Garsen and Kipini

River erosion continues to threaten the existence of Garsen Town.

1.4.2 Migration

As the range in most wet season grazing areas of the northern and hinterland pastoral dominated areas are depleting, most livestock are concentrated in the delta, along the river and the national parks (Tsavo and Kora) 1.5 Implications on food security

High livestock out-migration out of the drought-affected areas is likely to affect the food security in those areas.

Though currently the food security in the delta and riverine (Mixed and Marginal mixed farming zones) is stable, high livestock influx into these areas may deplete the resources much earlier than expected therefore have a direct bearing to the food security.

2.0 RURAL ECONOMY INDICATORS (FOOD AVAILABILITY)

2.1 Livestock Production.

2.1.1 Livestock body condition

Livestock body and health condition is reported to be fair in almost all parts of the district.

This is a normal situation at this time of the year; however, stress is anticipated due to long distance trekking in search of water.

2.1.2 Livestock diseases

Suspected cases of lumpy skin disease continue to be reported in parts of Wayu and Waldena while tsetse and tick infestation is still rampant in the riverine and delta areas.

2.1.3 Milk production

Milk availability is reported to have drastically declined in the northern parts of the district. Though the range resources in the delta have improved; milk yield is lower than normal. This could be due to low calving and kidding rates resulting from successive drought periods.

2.2 Crop Production

2.2.1 Timeliness and condition of various crop productions

Most farmers have harvested. However, most of the crop in parts of Kipini (Chara) was affected by excessive rain. It is estimated that over 90 acres of maize and legumes succumbed to the floods.

Rice farmers in Kipini (Ozi, Kilelengwani, Kau) are currently transplanting.

The crop is however being affected by snails/crabs and seawater encroachment into farm fields.

Wildlife (elephants, hippos, baboons, wild pigs) destruction of crops was widely reported in parts of Kipini, Garsen and Asako in Bangale

2.2.2 Pests and diseases

Main pests effecting crop reported during the month remain the snails and crabs into the rice fields.

2.2.3 Harvests

Most farmers in the mixed farming and marginal mixed farming zones of the district have harvested.

Tomato harvesting from the small-scale irrigated plots has started and is flooding the market.

2.2.4 Implications on food security

The food security is expected to temporarily improve in the mixed farming (delta region of Garsen and Kipini) and marginal mixed farming areas of Wenje and Galole.

The food security will however remain alarming in the northern and pastoral zone.

(pdf* format - 284 KB)